04 May 2008

Loose ends

You may have noticed that posts have been less frequent than usual recently.

This is because first I was finishing up the semester. Then I spent this weekend recovering from the semester. The good news is that I am done taking classes for credit, forever! This is also somewhat terrifying, because the prospect of doing research full-time and writing a thesis is daunting -- but also exciting...

Anyway, not too long ago I wrote about the napkin ring problem in calculus, inspired by Keith Devlin's article; Devlin has given a calculus-free solution, basically that corresponding cross-sections are equal. I alluded to this in the post a couple weeks ago but didn't write out the details. In his May column, Devlin gives some reader remarks to Paul Lockhart's A Mathematician's Lament, which I wrote about back in March.

Also, here's an interview from Leonard Mlodinow, at Carl Bialik's The Numbers Guy -- my mother fairly reliably forwards me some of the The Numbers Guy columns, because she gets some sort of e-mail from the Wall Street Journal, and I don't have the heart to tell her that I'm a step ahead of her! I previously wrote about Mlodinow's probability quiz. Unfortunately, the cover of Mlodinow's book The Drunkard's Walk no longer seems to feature dice.

No comments: